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It Took Me a Year To See the Doctor After I Noticed Symptoms

Meet Bonnie:

I’m 45 years old and I have had Ulcerative Colitis for about 13 years. I had never heard of UC until the doctor told me I had it. I haven’t talked to anyone else who has UC before. This is very new to me.

Some more about me:

I am an avid reader and have been since I was very little. I also enjoy writing poems and short stories. I haven’t written anything in years though. I married my high school sweetheart 24 years ago this June, and we have 2 children. Our daughter is 23 and is going to Fanshawe College to become a PSW. She is also engaged. Our son is 21 and is currently unemployed but seeking work. He has ADHD and minor developmental delays.


I am currently symptom free I think. Except for the aches and pains of a 45 ear old woman. I have been symptom free for about a year. Before that I was constantly having issues with my UC, sometimes worse, sometimes I could manage.

Bonnie’s Story:

When I first started having symptoms I thought it was stress or something. As I mentioned above, it took me a year to get the courage to go to my doctor. When I did, he ran blood tests, stool tests, then sent me for a sigmoidoscopy. That was a nightmare. The doctor who performed it was a student, and the doctor supervising him was very distant. I had had 2 children, but I was terrified of the procedure. The nurse was sensitive to my nervousness and tried to comfort me.

Afterward I was very uncomfortable as the doctor explained quickly to me what I had. He handed me a bunch of brochures and a prescription for prednisone and told me to come back in 6 weeks. When I went back to him, he checked me quickly, gave me a new prescription and sent me on my way. When I called for a refill on my prescription, I was told to go back to my family doctor.

Now I am on sulfasalazine. 2 pills 4 times daily. I avoid anything too fatty, and try not to let myself get too stressed. Not always an easy thing to do.

I switched family doctors because my old one retired. My new doctor sent me to a clinic which specializes in gastrointestinal illnesses. They helped me a lot. I was sent for a colonoscopy and it went so well. I liked the meds they gave me to relax me.

They prescribed a suppository medication for me to use each night before bed. I used that for several months. It really helped. They tried me on a different medication but that upset my stomach, so I went back on sulfasalazine. They put my dosage up from 3 times a day to 4 times a day, and now I’m symptom free.

I still look for the bathroom wherever I go, but I don’t panic if I don’t see one. I don’t worry as much when we’re traveling on the road, but I doubt I’ll ever not have a fear of going back to the days when I couldn’t even go on a 1 hour drive without stopping to go. Thank God for the GPS. My husband and kids have been very supportive. My son scouts out the bathroom for me wherever we go. My daughter is a bookworm like me, so she does research. My husband is handy with the GPS, and he helps me laugh it off when things get messy.

My biggest concerns are flare ups, and what if it gets to the point where I need surgery? I am very lucky. I have what appears to be a very mild case. It was pretty bad before I was diagnosed, but since I have been on medication it has been manageable. Especially the last year or so. I thought I was going to have to live with the uncontrollable urges, cramps or worse forever. Or else have surgery. But with the help of my doctor I am controlling UC for now.

Medication Treatment Right Now:

I am currently on Sulfasalizine. I have used Salofalk suppositories and Prednisone in the past. There were a couple of other meds that I tried but I don’t remember their names.

written by Bonnie H

submitted in the colitis venting area

2 thoughts on “It Took Me a Year To See the Doctor After I Noticed Symptoms”

  1. Yay Bonnie for finding remission!

    And yay for making what sounds like a successful doctor switch, that’s not always working out so well, so congrats for you there. AND….congrats on finding some good relaxers pre-colonoscopy:) Do you recall what the exact meds were you were given prior to the scope?

    Thanks for sharing too:)

    Love the happy stories!


  2. I was given a mild sedative prior to my colonoscopy. I told the nurses about how bad my sigmoidoscopy was, so they gave me an extra dose. I don’t know the actual drugs, but I wish I could have some before my sigmoidoscopy. I would have another colonoscopy in a heart beat before I’d have another sigmoidoscopy, even with the prep meds the day before.

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